An “equal pay” chant broke out while U.S. Soccer president Carlos Cordeiro addressed the crowd during the United States women’s national team’s World Cup champion ceremony in New York City on Wednesday.
The team made its way down the Canyon of Heroes (or Heroines, as many noted on Twitter) and concluded with a celebration at city hall fit for back-to-back champions.
Equal pay chant breaks out at parade
After each player was introduced, Cordeiro was brought up to speak. As he spoke about the federation’s investment in youth girls programs, development teams and the NWSL, he took a purposeful pause and began to note the federation would continue to invest in women’s soccer.
He couldn’t quite finish the remarks as a bold “equal pay” chant broke out in front of him for 10 seconds.
The moment sparked a great reaction and comment from Alex Morgan, who took to the mic minutes later.
— Meg Linehan (@itsmeglinehan) July 10, 2019
Morgan thanked everyone for the chants and posters, telling them to “keep it up.” She paused for a moment with a smile that hasn’t seemed to leave these players faces since the final whistle blew in France.
“I meant the USA chants,” she said.
Young girls and boys interviewed on CNN before the parade remarked on equal pay and posters were held high on the parade route.
“Equal pay, that’s the tea” pic.twitter.com/lNiBzEQCVs
— Danielle Allentuck (@d_allentuck) July 10, 2019
Chants were heard long before the U.S. Soccer president took the stage.
— Kayla Lombardo (@KaylaLombardo11) July 10, 2019
US Soccer president: ‘I think we can’
Cordeiro waited a few minutes while the crowd chanted before returning to his comments. A few sentences after, he told them he believed by working together they could achieve it.
Wow. On equal pay - Carlos Cordeiro, pres of US soccer federation just said: "Together I think we can get this done."
— Kate Bolduan (@KateBolduan) July 10, 2019
"We believe all female athletes deserve fair and equitable pay and together, I think we can get this done,” he said.
— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) July 10, 2019
Abby Wambach, a former USWNT player and 2015 World Cup champion, noted on Twitter the use of “equitable” has been used for decades.
“Let’s go with the people here,” she tweeted. “EQUAL pay!!!!”
Robin Roberts, the emcee for the event, even threw in a sly reference to the comments when she returned to the podium.
“You gotta know your audience,” she said quickly before continuing with the party.
Parade more than a coronation
Throughout media coverage both Tuesday and during the parade Wednesday, it has felt like more than a soccer victory. Megan Rapinoe has spoken about the presidential office not representing the American people and every player who has taken a seat for interviews has spoken of equal treatment by its federation.
US Soccer president Carlos Cordeiro walks up to the podium and the crowd in NYC chants "Equal pay! Equal pay!" at him. In 2015, it felt like the #USWNT's win was about winning the World Cup itself. This time, it feels entirely like a platform to a much bigger conversation.
— Caitlin Murray (@caitlinmurr) July 10, 2019
The fight for equal pay by the USWNT is about more than money. It’s about equal treatment, marketing and perks as those given to the men’s team. The sides agreed to mediation as the next step in the lawsuit.
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